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Information Literacy Guide: About

About this Guide

This Information Literacy guide is designed to teach the most commonly needed information concepts in higher education learning. It is applicable for all levels of information searching and use.

The guide has been adapted specifically for the University of Fort Hare (UFH) community.



Video Tutorial: Information Literacy in a Nutshell

Source: Instructional Services, David L. Rice Library

What is Information Literacy?

Information Literacy is a set of abilities requiring individuals to “recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed information.”

Information Literacy forms the basis for lifelong learning. It is common to all disciplines, to all learning environments, and to all levels of education. It enables learners to master content and extend their investigations, become more self-directed, and assume greater control over their own learning.

 An information literate person is able to:

  • Determine the extent of information needed;
  • Access the needed information effectively and efficiently;
  • Evaluate information and its sources critically;
  • Incorporate selected information into one’s knowledge base;
  • Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose;
  • Understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally.

Source: Information literacy competency standards for higher education. (2000).

Learning Outcomes

This guide will enable students to:

  • Demonstrate the ability to analyze and articulate information needs, demonstrate an understanding of query construction techniques.
  • Demonstrate the ability to critically evaluate information by being aware of a variety of standard evaluation methods.
  • Demonstrate the ability to organize information and be aware of a variety of writing and referencing styles such as Harvard and APA.
  • Learners must be aware of the legal and ethical implications of using information, including SA copyright laws and aspects of plagiarism.


After completing this guide, you will be able to:

  • define your need for information
  • find the correct information
  • evaluate the information found
  • understand the legal and ethical implications when using information
  • communicate the information effectively